It would be a lie if I said I worked out to feel awesome and did not care about physical progress. Because I do, just like most of you too! But the one stigma I despise is that it is all about losing a certain amount of pounds. There is so much more to our personal heath and fitness journeys than a few numbers on a scale.

Last week I finished up my first ever round of Insanity Max 30! I absolutely loved the 30-minute workouts, the energy Shaun T exudes throughout the program, and the change up of the workouts midway through. As is natural upon finishing up a workout program, I wanted to see what kind of progress I made. So here are 3 ways that I  measured my progress WITHOUT that gosh darn scale!


Log onto Instagram and we see these everywhere! And there is a good reason as to why and that’s because we can actually SEE the change in our bodies. A lot of us work out to improve our physical appearance and photos are the best way to document this.

On day one throw on some tight fitting clothes or a bikini, find good lighting and take your “before” photos. On the last day replicate your day one photos – same outfit, same lighting, same poses! This will make it simple for you to put the photos side by side and compare. I posted my first ever progress photos today, check them out here!

BUT, physical improvements are not the only way to measure progress! And, in my opinion, they should not be the sole reason you workout.


I remember starting Insanity Max 30 with confidence – it is just a 30-minute workout, it cannot be that bad, right? WRONG. On day one, after a mere 8 minutes, I needed my first break. The sweat was dripping, my body was crying, and I was ready to quit. But I powered through the next 22 minutes, taking breaks as needed.

On my last day, I redid that workout. And guess what? I made it through it! This proved two crucial things.

  1. My body was stronger, I had more endurance, and I was fitter.
  2. I got over the negative nancy in my head and knew I could push through it!

So do the same workout on your first and last day or run a mile on your first and last day and observe the progress you make! If you are staying consistent there is no way around progress!


Do you have more energy? Do you find yourself reaching for an apple over a cookie? Have your cravings subsided? Is your skin clearer? Are you sleeping better?

One of the things that working out regularly helped me with was my skin. I have acne prone skin, but my acne actually became a meter for how well I am taking care of myself. If I sweat toxins out of my body, fuel myself with proper nutrients, drink enough, and care for my skin properly chances are my skin is pretty dang happy.

I also find myself attracted to healthy food more often and also more in control of my cravings. For example, we stopped at a rest stop on the way home from a day trip over the weekend and my parents got ice cream, but I just did not want any. I even stood in front of the cooler for 5 minutes trying to pick one, only to walk away. And this is not because I was thinking “OMG how many calories that must have, that will ruin my whole day, that is so unhealthy!” I just had gotten over that constant desire for sweets!

And overall I just feel better. I am happier, more confident, much less bloated, and full of longer lasting energy. See, living a healthy lifestyle comes with a lot of positive side effects! And these too are great ways to measure your progress without that dang scale.

As a health and fitness coach, I often hear “help me lose weight”. No wonder eating disorders are prevalent in our society with that kind of pressure! But it is about so much more than that. We always hear about losing weight, but never maintaining weight or gaining weight!  There comes a time when the number on the scale just should not go down further and at the latest, this should be the point where progress is measured in different ways.

The scale is not the only or best answer. Find what works for you, what makes you truly happy. Because a number does not at all define you.

In what ways do you like to measure progress?

With love,

Lena Marie

P.S. If you want a little extra motivation to get fit and healthy, then click here and shoot me a message! I would love to help YOU make progress in your own way <3

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